ACTIVITIES: Living on the Kitsap Peninsula means there is a wealth of outdoor activities to choose from - including boating, hiking, camping, kayaking, scenic drives, clam digging, beautiful plants, animals, and Puget Sound (of course!). There are also lots of quaint little towns (outside of Bremerton, too!) to go exploring. We love Port Gamble (where we got married!), Poulsbo (great antique stores, parks, and a small downtown shopping area) and Port Townsend in particular. When you live in Bremerton, there is lots to do and see, without needing to even take the boat to Seattle! Below is a photo of Kyle and I - we stayed in this Yurt at one of the State Parks nearby.
FRESH LOCAL FOOD: Some of you know we get a produce box from Full Circle Farm (which really is SO much more than a produce box, now), but you should also know, you can get those boxes in Bremerton, too! We're most definitely going to continue getting our fresh produce boxes from Full Circle Farm. I'm also stoked to be so close to Central Market. If you haven't been to Central Market before - you are missing out! I could spend hours in there looking around, tasting, and picking out what to take home with me. Their slogan is: "A fresh market for people who love food." I'm in! Lastly, and I have yet to personally check this out, is the more popular than ever Bremerton Farmers Market. When I worked at this sweet little cafe (Cafe Destino, which sadly is no longer in business) there was a very small farmers market in the parking lot next door. Now, it's huge! I can't wait to check out the much bigger farmers market once we're moved in! This is a photo from the Bremerton Farmers Market website, but they also have a facebook page if you're interested!
COMMUTE: I bet I have already made some of you laugh at that. The COMMUTE! Something I enjoy? Heck yes! Having a little forced "me time," is a good thing. I really enjoy my time on the ferry to either journal, read, nap, play a game, or just sit back and enjoy the view. One thing I love, is that once I'm off that ferry, I am ready to go full speed ahead at whatever is next - whether that be work or coming home and getting some projects done. I'm a planner and list-maker by nature, so once I get off that boat I feel refreshed and ready for the day (or evening!). Plus, a little bonus, it's kind of fun seeing your home from the ferry! Below is a photo from the Washington State Ferry flicker site - check out some of these photos!
UP-AND-COMING: Somehow, the Bremerton we're living in now does not feel like the Bremerton I grew up in. Not that the Bremerton I grew up was bad! I loved our community and enjoyed my time in high school, and we were close to lots of outdoor activities and family. But Bremerton has some fresh, up-and-coming restaurants and neighborhoods that I really love. Kyle and I truly enjoy going out to eat - so I'm not going to spill the beans now on our favorite places (I've gotta save that info for other posts, so we have a reason to go out to eat again soon!). But, there are lots of new cafes, restaurants, bars, outdoor movies, art galleries, farmers markets, shopping - you name it! - to enjoy. My favorite hot spots right now are Downtown Bremerton and Manette, which each have a multitude of places to explore and have fun. If you're interested in getting a better feel of the community in Manette, check out this quick article by Three Sheets Northwest. You really get a sense for how people love Manette based not only off that article, but by the comments at the bottom. Below is one of the photos of Manette from their article - one of our favorite restaurants, The Boat Shed, is right on the water and accessible by boat!
WATER: Who are we kidding, we are suckers for waterfront property! This wasn't a deal breaker when we were looking at other homes, but it sure is an awesome bonus. There is nothing like opening up the windows, or stepping outside to enjoy the sound of the water and fresh salty air. This is a view from our yard:
INVESTMENT: Bremerton is just a smart place to buy right now. Not only do we personally just feel it's a good decision since housing prices are less expensive than the Seattle area, but only a ferry ride away for those of us that work in the city. But, for those of you that need the proof, it's been getting press for being one of the strongest markets by 2014 in the U.S. with housing prices predicted to go up by up to 40%! Yowza. New homeowners (like us!) just love that!
FAMILY: We both are blessed to have very loving, wonderful relationships with our family. When we think about where we want to raise our kids, it most definitely involves being close to family and friends. One of the things I'm most looking forward to once we're moved in, is a open house party to celebrate! I am truly looking forward to more BBQ's, and wine and conversation in the backyard with some of the people I love most.
...and for the number one reason we chose Bremerton as our home....
COMFORT: We are just comfortable here! There is nothing that can describe the feeling more than just feeling completely at peace, relaxed and at home. Even though we enjoyed living in Seattle and Mercer Island over the past few years, we only really felt truly relaxed and comfortable in Bremerton. We grew up here, which we know is a huge reason why we love it. But, I feel like it's more than that. Just having a little extra space to call your own and less traffic makes me feel so much better. I can always hop on the ferry if I want some extra excitement in Seattle, but for the most part I want to feel relaxed and at ease in my home, which is exactly how I feel in our little house in Manette.
So, that's what we think, but what about you? For those of you that already live in Bremerton, did I leave anything out that you love? I'm also curious - for those of you that don't live in Bremerton, what are the reasons you love where you live?